When the image of the Tennessee Titans’ holiday card was released several weeks ago, a picture that included owner Bud Adams standing between Vince Young and Chris Johnson, it was presumed that coach Jeff Fisher would be the odd-man out in Tennessee.
On Wednesday, word came down that Adams had decided to part ways with the former No. 3 overall pick. He also added that his evaluation of the coaching staff would be completed in the next several days, so it’s possible that Fisher follows Young out of town and a new era in Tennessee begins altogether. Fisher is under contract for 2011, and with the lockout pending, the trend has been to keep coaches in town (Oakland and Tom Cable notwithstanding).
As for Young, the next move is still in question. Does he get released outright (he’s got a sizable roster bonus due in March and an $ 8 million salary for 2011), or can the Titans package him and a pick to move up in the Andrew Luck sweepstakes?
Or, do they send a lower pick to bring Kyle Orton in from Denver, where the new world order, led by John Elway, is starting its evaluation process?
Whatever the case, leverage in the trading world has been lost by announcing the intent to part ways. Why wouldn’t another team wait out the Titans to bring the asking price down, regardless of its current quarterbacking situation? The various incidents that have been played out in the media already lower the ceiling markedly, regardless of the occasional periods of superior play.
I’m most curious to see the impact on the locker room. Given the turnaround of rosters from year-to-year, perhaps it doesn’t matter. For now, veteran Kerry Collins, who played well in relief of Young, slides into the first chair.
I have a feeling there are a number of twists and turns yet to occur in Tennessee this off-season. We’ll be watching intently.